State House passes bill limiting attorney general's authority

Friday, March 18th 2005, 6:21 am
By: News On 6

OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) -- The Oklahoma House passes legislation Thursday that would limit the ability of the state Attorney General's office to file lawsuits.

House Bill 1879 would require the attorney general to get approval from the governor or the Legislature before he filed a lawsuit.

Supporters said it would stop Attorney General Drew Edmondson from using lawsuits to set public policy, which they say is the province of the Legislature.

Edmondson says the measure is tied to his threat to sue the poultry industry over alleged pollution of northeastern Oklahoma waterways by poultry operations.

He said today he may be forced to sue the companies sooner than he had planned so that the lawsuit will pre-date the bill if it's enacted.

The Senate must still consider the measure and Governor Henry says he'll veto it if it reaches his desk.